The NCAA Tournament, better known as "March Madness," began play last night.  The games were on tape delay here in Korea.  Still, I enjoyed watching a bit of the Gonzaga-Winthrop game on television.  The Gonzaga Bulldogs, a team from Spokane, Washington, won 74-64.  My Washington Huskies beat Montana, 88-77.  The Huskies are the top seed in Albuquerque Bracket, so they needed to perform better than they did against bottom seed Montana if they have a chance to win it all.  I do have to confess that although I am rooting for the Huskies to win March Madness, I’m not optimistic of their chance of success in the tournament.  After all, it is a ritual for Seattle sports fans to be pessimistic about their teams’ ability to win championships.  I did not choose the Huskies to win it all in my tournament predictions.  Although the Huskies are my sentimental favorite, something tells me that they won’t make it past the "Sweet 16."  When filling out tournament "brackets," or predictions, it is necessary to be objective.  I also like Gonzaga, another Washington State favorite.  (It’s difficult for anyone from Washington State to dislike the "’Zags."  The Washington Huskies-Washington State Cougars rivalry is another story.)  I did not pick the ‘Zags to go far either.  The ‘Zags are too often on the wrong side of upsets.

If you’re not into college basketball, but you enjoy investing, give’s "Stock Madness 2005" challenge a try.  It’s a fun way to see how 64 top-performing investments perform against each other.  With the markets doing so poorly lately, one needs something to make investing more fun.  Of the stocks listed, I am personally bullish on Apple (AAPL), Yahoo (YHOO), Blue Nile (NILE), and (OSTK).’s tourney seems to be heavily leaning towards technology stocks.  I am surprised they did not include eBay or Google, two technology titans with heavy stock price swings over the past few months.

For those who are exercise nuts or generally stick to a strict diet, beware!  What follows may be discomforting to read.  For the rest of us, read on.  Our family had a junk food craving tonight and went out to each at a local restaurant.  We’ve been eating dinner at home pretty much since we arrived in Seoul and decided we needed to get out and feed our pent-up American junk food craving.  We loaded up on pizza, Philly steak n’ cheese sandwiches, cheddar and bacon fries, and Buffalo wings.  Completely artery-clogging junk food!  It was delicious.  If it’s any consolation, we walked to the restaurant because we don’t yet have our car here in Seoul.  We don’t do it very often, but we’re not alone.  It was Friday night, and around 7 p.m. the restaurant filled with customers seeking the same artery-clogging food.  I guess we’re not the only junk-food junkies.

From the "Things that Make You Go Hmm…" Department:  During our trip to Korea, we departed from Reagan National Airport in Arlington, Virginia.  One of President Reagan’s first bold moves was to fire the nation’s air traffic controllers when they illegally went on strike.  Now the commercial airport closest to the nation’s capital is named after this president.  Perhaps Congress was being a bit cheeky when they voted to rename one of the nation’s most famous airports after President Reagan.


Books by MG EdwardsMG Edwards is a writer of books and stories in the thriller and science fiction-fantasy genres. He also writes travel adventures and children’s books. A former U.S. diplomat, he served in South Korea, Paraguay, and Zambia before leaving the Foreign Service to write full time.

Edwards is author of six books. His memoir, Kilimanjaro: One Man’s Quest to Go Over the Hill, was finalist for the Book of the Year Award and the Global eBook Award. He has published four children’s picture books in the World Adventurers for Kids Series: Alexander the Salamander; Ellie the Elephant; Zoe the Zebra; and a collection featuring all three stories. His book Real Dreams: Thirty Years of Short Stories is an anthology of 15 short stories.

Edwards lives in Taipei, Taiwan with his family. He has also lived in Austria, Singapore and Thailand. For more books or stories by M.G. Edwards, visit his web site at or contact him by e-mail at or on Twitter @m_g_edwards.

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